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Saturday, December 31, 2011

Terminal 21 @ Asoke, Bangkok

Last chance post for 2011!

I've neglected writing for a while but I haven't forgotten. I was in Idaho for my friend's wedding, in Connecticut visiting family, then back in Bangkok working, then off to Koh Samet and now it's the last day of the year! How time flies.

In between all that I've squeezed in some holiday shopping. Most of that shopping has taken place at Terminal 21 - a new mall that popped up in October at the Asoke intersection.

Think Siam meets MBK meets an airport. Each level has a different theme, from bottom up: Rome (larger flagship stores), Paris (boutiques), Tokyo (cheaper fast fashion stalls), London (men's), Hollywood (accessories).

Despite some large chain stores, there's lots of small Thai designers and vintage shops to be found. With rent cheaper than Siam expect prices to be slightly lower. I usually stick to Paris and Tokyo and of course the accessories floor. Ballet Shoes 1959 has a store here, as does Madame H (flamboyant shoes also found in Baan Silom, Silom soi 19), and Sugar and Cream (vintage duds originally from Lido).

In Paris find trendy work appropriate clothes, dresses and evening wear. In Tokyo find everything you would in Siam or Chatuchak and more.

One piece of advice - skip the food. Gourmet Market on the bottom floor is teeny tiny (much like most of the clothing on the upper floors) and other than that the Thai/Japanese/Western fusion upstairs doesn't seem to get anything right. Find a small ramen restaurant in the labyrinth of sois from 23 - Thonglor, if you ask me!

Opening Hours: 10:00-22:00 
Location: Sukhumvit Road (between Soi 19 and 21) 
MRT: Sukhumvit 
BTS: Asok (direct access via Skywalk) 

Read more: Terminal 21 Bangkok - Bangkok Shopping Mall http://www.bangkok.com/shopping-mall/terminal21.htm#ixzz1i6FcgiW2

Terminal 21 | Bangkok shopping | BK Magazine Online

Happy Holidays everyone!

Tokyo Floor

Paris Floor

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Siam Square Outdoor Market

I'm back after a short hiatus. I've been soo busy. It's not like I was watching 6 consecutive seasons of The Sopranos... I swear! Anyway, when I do drag myself off the couch one of my favorite shopping destinations is still Siam Square.

Along the sidewalk of Rama I road, front of Siam Square every evening an outdoor market is set up. It spans from Siam skytrain station towards the True Move store and all the way until the 7/11 after Lido. (See map of Siam)

There's definitely some cheap treasures here if you take the time to browse. Warning: one of my main gripes - sizes are teeny tiny for the most part. Also be warned, when the market is open, the sidewalk gets pretty crowded.

Some of the clothes come from shops within Siam Square, and others are sellers that come for the outdoor market only.

Open hours: sellers start setting up around 5pm - closing up around 11pm
Look for: accessories, cheap shoes, second hand shirts and dresses, new stuff imported from Korea & China, cheap knockoffs, jewelry, trendy sunglasses, bags, denim.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Lunch break shopping, a proud Thai tradition

It's Friday, the day Ladies of the Office descend on shops and markets to take an extra long lunch break, haggling, sweating and shopping their little hearts out.

For those of you who work in offices around Chongnonsri, I'm sure you're familiar with Hong Kong Market, Soi Lalaisup, even the street shopping of Silom. But if you don't feel like competing with the hordes of office ladies then the (somewhat) newly opened City Viva might be a better option to get your Friday shop on.

It's very J-Avenue-esque but with branches of some faithful Siam Square shops like Ballet Shoes and Undress (another store for cute/work-friendly shoes).

A few food options - if the kuay tiew or sum tum stalls in front of City Viva aren't your style then check out BK Magazine's review.

There's a a lot of tiny shops by lesser known Thai designers that are worth checking out if you're in the area. Prices can't compare to the talad, but at least your cubicle-mate won't show up wearing the same 399Baht dress as you on Monday!

Shops By a Local Designer

Workshop (2F) - Simple, tailored-style pants with flowy loose and subdued patterned tops. I think I know their target audience, and their sitting around me at the office as I type this.
Apostrophe-P (2F) - The store itself is more interesting than the clothes! A few unique structural tops and dresses.
Wishlist (2F) - A mish mash of funky shoes, accessories and dresses. If you can fit into Thai sizes of course.
Panga (2F) - Really cool cotton fabric for pillow cases, dresses, what have you. Some ready to wear dresses and kids clothes too.

Shops with Imported Clothes

Viva Closet (2F) - Ceramic cups, teapots and pitchers. Handbags, vintage style accessories, dresses and tops but nothing you wouldn't find in Siam.
Chine Chic (2F) - "Nothing from Platinum!" the saleslady assures us as soon as our eyes wander to her shop. All imports from Korea, Hong Kong (read: Guangzhou). Some real-ish-looking Marc Jacobs and Roberto Cavalli.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Never Miss a Sale in Bangkok

I'm so sad I missed the Sretsis sale last week! It makes me want to go out and buy a full priced dress at Gaysorn just to spite the fashion gods.

And the big draw tomorrow is the grand opening of Uniqlo in Central World. If you've seen the print ads around the BTS you'll know hoodies, jeans and t-shirts are going for around 300-500Baht. Since I'm still wearing my Uniqlo skinny jeans I bought in NYC 4 years ago, I'll be stocking up!

So I thought I'd do a quick post on some tips to keep up with sales. Here's a few websites that will give you the lowdown on designer sales, department stores sales, makeup, tech stuff, and who knows what else.

Promotion To You

Where On Sale

Listings in free weeklies Guru Magazine and BK Magazine often have sale details too.

By the way check out Taste of noWhere for your fashion fix... then wait for it to trickle down to vintage shops and market stalls! Just discovered this blog/online market. Wish their shoes were in my size.

YES! Tomorrow's Friday!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Thai Airways Market or ตลาดการบินไทย

The Perks of Working at Thai Airways

I was an intern at Thai Airways a few years back. I answered emails, telephones, worked in ticket sales, hunted down mysteriously lost mileage points, gave input for advertising slogans, edited newsletters and even sat in on a few press conferences. Oh what did I learn, you ask? Well! Did you know there's this really great market behind Thai Airways?!

I Fly Thai, and I Buy, Behind Thai 

In Thai it's ตลาดการบินไทย (Thai Airways market), officially known as ตลาดลุงเพิ่ม (talad lung puem)

The front area, closest to the Thai Airways headquarters, is non-aircon, narrow sois with lots of children's toys, clothes, imported Japanese snacks, and older Thai lady outfits. There's also some cute stalls interspersed that sell Zara and Topshop knockoffs, and of course lots of cold weather clothes for all those Thai Airways employees jetting off to God knows where.

The back area, connected to the non-aircon, but further from the main building, is open air but each shop is air-con. Here you will find the H&M and Topshop ferried in from overseas flights and even Thai brands like Sretsis and Kloset. And not the obvi fake Kloset that's been popping up left and right, but real pieces a few thousand cheaper than Paragon.  Real, first hand pieces, bought for a discount by the shop owner. Goes without saying that selection is very limited.

I found a couple cute skirts and a 'Fendi' dress. Fendi straight from the sweatshops of Guangzhou more like it. Things are even more pricey than Siam here, with mostly imported and branded goods. Lots of Class A bags to turn your coworkers green with envy, and curiosity as to how you can afford them, if that's your thing. 

How to Shop There

Opening Hours: Mon-Sat: 10am-4pm, Closed on Sunday [Caution: Mon-Fri from 12-1pm you will be engulfed in a moshpit of office ladies]
How to get there: Enter from Viphavadee Rangsit Soi 22 or from the back of the Thai Airways headquarters, on the main Viphavadee Rangsit Rd. MRT Ladprao is closest, or BTS Mor Chit/MRT Chatuchak Park are a bit farther away but still convenient. Take a motorcycle (no more than 60Baht from BTS Mor Chit, less from MRT Ladprao) or taxi from there. Don't ask me about buses.

The air-con shop section of Thai Airways Market:

The non-air-con section, cheaper, non-branded, non-imported and more likely to be seen in Siam too:

Sunday, August 7, 2011


After a work event yesterday, which had me on my feet for about 12 hours, my legs just aren't up for a shopping trip around Siam. So time for some virtual browsing...

I just learned about the Remake/Remodel project which took place earlier this month in London. 4 next generation Thai designers, Sorada Thaiwaranon, Boat Khajeenikorn, Pun Sarasas and accessories designer, Rudi Joti, rework the most iconic of Thai textiles - Thai silk.

You know Thai silk. You've seen it on countless purple-haired Khun Yings, stiffly covering the modesty of female public officials at formal events and on almost every other Thai female over the age of 45 at one point or another. It's a beautiful fabric, but if anyone's in need of a facelift and some PR, it's Thai silk.

These Thai designers, each enrolled in design institutes in London, presented a commissioned collection featuring their interpretation of Thai silk. 

Although I love a bargain as much as the next girl, I want to see Thailand known for innovative fashion and design not just cheap Red Bull t-shirts. Hope these designers set up a flagship store in Siam Discovery soon! And hey, maybe one day Yingluck will be the Michelle Obama to their Thakoon.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Underground Mall @ Kamphaeng Phet MRT

Sweet, sweet air-con!

Inside the MRT, or underground, you may notice hordes of teenagers and sweaty tourists milling about. Elbow them out of your way and head into the Underground Mall. There's new and vintage clothing stores, toy shops, Blythe dolls, computer bags and second hand designer bags.

If you're traveling to Chatuchak from the Kamphaeng Phet MRT, this place is worth a visit. Some pics from 2 notable shops below.

Junk Garage by Kenya - This shop is on both sides of the walkway. Turn into the left side for 60's dresses, vintage bags and clutches, so much jewelry it would put my hoarder great grandma to shame, and retro toys. Turn right for second hand watches, bowls, ashtrays, knick knacks, luggage, vintage decor.

Lux Living - Secondhand designer handbags and some second hand clothes. Small selection but everything is in very good condition and high quality.